The Happiness Equation

A great follow on from the recent reading of Unshakeable. This time its Neil Pasricha with one of my favourite reads so far in 2019 The Happiness Equation: Want Nothing + Do Anything = Have Everything. Thankfully the lessons in the book are simpler than the title!

Want to know how to create some happiness, understand burnout and have a handful of common sense concepts – Neil calls them ‘secrets’, but we’ll forgive him! He includes a good collection of quotes throughout the book and it’s a great acknowledgement to the ancient philosophies that are a foundation of many current ideas and approaches to happiness, contentment and general lifehacking.

The ‘secrets’ essentially resolve to:

  1. Three walks – aka exercise
  2. 20 minute replay – journaling
  3. Random acts of kindness throughout the week
  4. A complete unplug – a dedicated amount of time away from distractions and concerns
  5. Hit flow
  6. 2 minute meditations
  7. 5 gratitudes – make a conscious effort to acknowledge your gratitude throughout the day

Neil walks us through the details of these and other concepts through the book in an entertaining and understandable way. His chapter on tackling that which holds us back really resonates. Neil focuses on the ‘Do’ in order to achieve the ‘Can do’ and ‘Want to Do’. Make that initial step into ‘Do’ easy, want to run? Go out and run – right now, no need for expensive shoes, gear or apps. Get out there and do it. That will start you on the ‘Do, Can do, Want to do’ cycle to achievement.

We have some great chapters on prioritisation – though some seem more achievable if you own the business rather than working for the business owner.

A few of my favourite quotes from The Happiness Equation: Want Nothing + Do Anything = Have EverythingThe greatest discovery of any generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitude. – William JamesFor there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so – William ShakespeareEverything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way – Viktor Frankl

The Happiness Equation: Want Nothing + Do Anything = Have Everything

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